A grieving father and his teammate take part in a challenging 6,000 mile rally to raise money for a charity that has been helping his family.
Stephen Hughes is preparing alongside Gemma Bullock for this summer’s Baltic Sea Circle Adventure Rally in aid of the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity which provides palliative care to dying patients here in Fenland in their own homes and also runs the Alan Hudson Day Treatment Center in Wisbech.
Her goal was a whopping £50,000 for the charity which was caring for his wife Jenny at their Cambridge hospice when she died of a rare cancer in late 2019.
Jenny’s death at the age of 35 left Stephen, 39, with his three sons, aged 15, 14 and 9, to care for and refurbish his Porsche 944, which he bought on eBay in 2014 for £600 coping with his grief and keeping him mentally strong for her.
Now he’s hoping the car, which has been rusting on the driveway for the last few years before the refurbishment, will take him and Gemma on a journey that starts in the UK, to the start line in Hamburg, Germany, and then to the rally through the Baltics: Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Vennland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, before hopefully heading back to Hamburg.
Stephen explained that Jenny experienced tingling in her legs and had trouble walking and went back and forth to the doctors before finally a scan showed a tennis ball sized tumor on her spine between her shoulder blades.
She died six months after being diagnosed with the disease and Stephen said: “She was such a determined and kind person and fought very hard to help our family create memories with activities.
“In Jenny’s memory, I wanted to do something to raise a huge amount of money for the charity that has supported us in our time of need. There are hundreds of other Cambridgeshire families going through the same thing every year.
“My teammate Gemma and I would love to reach our £50,000 goal – and to get there we need to spread the word and gather lots of supporters. Just like a real rally car, everyone who donates and supports my challenge will have their name printed on the car as a small thank you. I have a website and blog which you can find here: https://wildspiritadventure.co.uk/”
The two get ready on June 17th for the June 19th launch and will hopefully be back in Hamburg by July 4th, they will not be able to use sat navs or take freeways to complete the course , so it will be a real test for the Porsche